The Washington Post has created an illustration of the progress of the neocons
. As you will see, it includes the usual deliberately confusing mess. It includes William F Buckley, a traditional High Tory intellectual, in the neoconservative estuary, simply because of his connection with James Burnham. It includes Libertarian strangeness from Ayn Rand, which doesn't strictly belong. It includes people who never really became neocons, and it excludes those who did but started as straightforward Cold War Liberals. But it does so all to the purpose of linking it all back to a dead revolutionary, who in all likelihood would have had the neocons taken on a blind date with a firing squad (I like that phrase). As usual, the main vector for this is the Shachtmanites, although most of those neocons who came under the influence of Shacthman did so late in his career, when he had become a leading right-wing social democrat and a supporter of the US in Vietnam. However, there is one very important thing missing from this picture (click on the image below). If anyone can tell me what it is in three syllables or less, they will win a pat on the head.
Labels: cold war, liberals, neoconservatism